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Matthew 28:1-7 “After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day
of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb. There
was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and,
going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3 His appearance was
like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. 4 The guards were so afraid
of him that they shook and became like dead men. The angel said to the women,
“Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was
crucified. 6 He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the
place where he lay. 7 Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen
from the dead…”
Good Friday marked the death not only of Jesus on the
cross, but the death of hope for many.
How many hundreds were hoping that Jesus would be the
answer that they were looking for?
What does it feel like to be let down?
How many countless people have been given promises only to
see the promises be broken?
The day of the crucifixion and the day after must have been
devastating to many.
Bewilderment, shock, fear, anxiety and hopelessness sets
Have you seen that look on people’s faces?
Have you seen people trying to silence those voices of
defeat filling their bodies with drugs, antidepressants, alcohol, and countless
I have seen those faces.
But these faces belong to people who have not heard the
How many people are still living under bondage even though
freedom has already been granted?
The tragedy of the resurrection if we were to name one is
that though Christ came to set us free and granted us that freedom through his
death burial and resurrection from the dead, people are still living as if the
way to freedom hasn’t been open to them.
Hiroo Onada a Japanese soldier reportedly kept fighting
WWII for 29 years after the war was done in 1945 because he did not know that
it was indeed finished.
Even though leaflets were distributed to him and his small
band of men many times telling him of this fact, he kept fighting a battle that
was over for 29 years and it was not until 1974 that he came out of the jungle.
For 29 years he lived off of insects, plants and coconuts.
When he would occasionally see people dressed in civilian
(normal clothes) he thought it was a trick.
He could not believe that the battle was over, so he lived in fear, in
confusion, in bondage for almost 3 decades.
I have some news for you today.
Jesus Christ is alive!!!!
With the resurrection of Jesus Christ the battle is over.
Colossians 2:13-15 says “When you were dead in your sins
and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He
forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal
indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away,
nailing it to the cross. 15 And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he
made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.”
What these verses mean to us in a nutshell is that whatever
it was from your past that was holding you down from dreaming, hoping, loving,
being who you are supposed to be; whatever thing you may have experienced or
you did; the power of that thing has been cancelled!!
But many people are still out there fighting with sin,
fighting with condemnation, fighting with their past, fighting with
un-forgiveness, beating themselves up because of mistakes from yesterday and
still dealing with wounds, pains and torments from earlier in their life.
In John 19:30 Jesus Christ said a 3 letter phrase that made
a sound throughout the whole world and that phrase is still speaking loud to us
today, especially today!!
He uttered, “It is finished” And those words gained
credibility and even more power when he rose from the dead.
Every promise that Jesus offered to us gained an eternal
strength when he rose out of the grave.
Concerning your past: He took the pain of the cross, the
nails in his hands and his feet so that in accepting Him into your life and
repenting of living the way you have been you will have forgiveness from your
Through the blood of Jesus our past is wiped out and we
have a fresh beginning.
Concerning your future:
His Resurrection gives us hope for our future.
Many times we define our future by the quality of our past,
but in Christ your future is secure, your future is bright.
You are today a product of your decisions from yesterday,
but your tomorrow is dependent upon the decisions you make today.
Concerning your present:
You can begin to hope again, love again, you can have peace, you can
experience joy, you no longer have to wallow in shame weighted by things from
the past, you can live a life free to be whom you were created to be.
When Jesus Christ rose again He opened up an opportunity
for all of us, without exception, to live life to the fullest.
The message of the cross and the empty tomb demands a
response from us all.
You cannot be exposed to these truths and stay silent.
You must respond.
And you do so in one of two ways:
deny the message and decide to continue living the way you have
accept the offer from Jesus and accept him in your heart, repent of your sins,
and receive healing for your life.
What will you decide??
Will you say just like He said……”It is finished?”